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WCup tournament director denies stadium problems

cricket Updated: Feb 19, 2011 01:59 IST

AP
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The World Cup's tournament director dismissed a report on Friday that Mumbai's stadium, which is set to host the final, does not comply with fire safety regulations. Press Trust of India reported that two fire officials made a visit on Wednesday to the city's Wankhede Stadium, which is due to stage the event's April 2 decider among other games, and found it lacked some safety facilities. PTI said that local fire chief Uday Tatkare would write to the Mumbai Cricket Association about the matter.

But tournament director Ratnakar Shetty, who is also the treasurer of the MCA, said by phone that there were no problems with the stadium.

"The claims are untrue," Shetty said. "At this moment I don't know what is being said about the safety norms and standards, but we have taken every aspect into account and all norms have been met with."

"In fact the fire department is scheduled to visit the Wankhede Stadium on Monday and we are waiting for that. We are very sure that once the inspection is done, we will have all the necessary clearances."

PTI's report quoted fire chief Tatkare as saying the newly renovated stadium, which will host three games at the six-week tournament, had "many loopholes" in its fire safety readiness. Fire hydrants, no-smoking indicators, fire alarms and extinguishers all still had to be installed, Tatkare said, according to PTI.

Other tournament officials also stressed there were no concerns with fire safety at Wankhede Stadium and confirmed the inspection would be carried out next week.

The World Cup begins on Saturday but the first game at Wankhede - between Canada and New Zealand - is not until March 13. The Mumbai Cricket Association announced on Thursday that Wankhede Stadium had been approved by the International Cricket Council to stage World Cup matches following nearly three years of redevelopment work.